Being a teacher, I just had to share this article from The Guardian about complaining to a school. It’s spot on. Every parent should be sent a copy to read.
There are times when I love my son so much, my heart hurts.
Tonight, I was telling him about the sponsored ‘sleep-out’ my brother-in-law and 12 year-old nephew are doing to raise money (and awareness) for youth homelessness. My son has always had a conscience pricking at him. It’s something I recognise acutely. He has been near tears before when we saw a homeless man asking for change but I didn’t have any so I said we’d come back after popping into town where I would get some cash. He talked about him all around town and, on the way back to the car, we went to give him the promised money but he was gone. My son remembers this like it was yesterday. It happened two years ago, when he was 5.
Anyway, my little campaigner-in-the-making was listening intently as I explained that by sleeping ‘rough’, his uncle and cousin would experience a tiny bit of what it was like and it would help them to understand how it feels. He asked if he could do it too and I told him that he was too little.
‘Would you do it, Mummy?’
My heart sank a little as I lied, ‘Of course I would.’
Fast forward past the usual bedtime hassles of:
‘Can we have a sleepover?’
‘Can I have another story?’
‘Why can’t we have a sleepover – we’ll be good…’
‘It’s a school night.’
‘It’s against the law on a school night.’
I know. I get a bit desperate sometimes.
Anyway, a while after all this malarkey, I went to check on them and found my son curled up in the corner of the hallway in his duvet. After berating him with the usual ‘school night’ argument he looked up at me, big wide eyes:
‘I was trying to be like a homeless person, Mummy. To see how they feel. It’s very uncomfortable’
I let him sleep on his bedroom floor instead (yes, even on a school night) and told him how proud I was of him. ‘You’re going to save the world one day, Love.’
He just might.
If you are interested in sleeping out for the homeless, click here.